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15 Best BIM Software [2021 Updated BIM Software List]

Last Updated on July 21, 2021 by Admin

Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

BIM (building information modeling) is an intelligent 3D modeling process used to efficiently plan, design, construct, and manage buildings or infrastructure. By retaining a shared resource of project data, BIM helps keep designers, managers, and stakeholders on the same page. Here is the list of the top 15 best BIM Software for 2021 and beyond.

What is BIM Software?

BIM software offers a model-based process for designing and managing buildings and infrastructures, advancing construction drawings to generate a digital representation of the functional properties of a facility.

Looking at BIM software is now an indispensable technology for building design. It allows architects, engineers, construction managers, and others to collaborate during design. This technology is critical for visualizing concepts and turning insignificant ideas into concrete reality.

As per the latest report, the building information modeling software market is poised to grow by $ 8.38 bn during 2021-2025 progressing at a CAGR of 24% during the forecast period. 

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Types of Building Information Modeling [BIM] used in construction

Building Information Modeling (BIM) is a 3D model-based system that gives insight and tools to plan, design, and construct structures more efficiently. The graphical simulation provided by BIM allows AEC (architecture, engineering, construction) professionals to see how their project will look in a real-life scenario.

With project renders and architecture, we can see the entire design even more efficiently starting the construction. Primarily, there are the following different types of BIM used in the AEC industry.

  • Geographic Building Information Modeling
  • Structural Building Information Modeling
  • Concrete Building Information Modeling
  • Precast Concrete Building Information Modeling
  • Construction Management Building Information Modeling
  • Architectural Building Information Modeling
  • MEP Building Information Modeling
  • Infrastructure Building Information Modeling

Top 15 Best BIM Software List

BIM software comes in different functionalities. Some have advanced functions, and others are built for specific industries. Hence, companies must account for things like building design, company size, and project lifecycle. BIM prevents delays, improves communication, and reduces overruns.

When selecting the best BIM software, we must look at features, ease of use, and value. Integration and analytics capabilities were also part of the comparison. Following are the 15 top and the best BIM software popularly in use in the AEC industry.

1. Autodesk Revit

Building Information Modeling (BIM) is the foundation of digital transformation in the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry. As the leader in BIM, Autodesk is the industry’s partner to realize better ways of working and better outcomes for business and the built world.

Autodesk Revit spans a wide array of users, from architects and designers to construction and project managers.

The software is very much centered on data and values. It offers tremendous flexibility for users to create their content and modify existing on. Even more, Revit includes a powerful graphical programming engine, “Dynamo”. This engine enables even the inexperienced, non-it user to create complicated geometries and perform data-driven tasks like import, export, and parametric modeling based on data.

Autodesk Revit tutorials

2. Autodesk BIM 360

In addition to its established BIM Software, Autodesk has created a cloud-based ecosystem for construction data management: BIM 360. It builds on top of standard features like 2D modeling, 3D drawing, and conflict track. It also serves as the central repository for all design and construction documents.

Users can access documents via the cloud and gain complete visibility into any aspect of the project. For large companies or projects and best-of-breed performance, BIM 360 rules supreme. Click here to explore the software.

3. Vectorworks Architect

For creatives and design-centric employees, it’s hard to imagine a better BIM than Vectorworks Architect. This BIM software has been designed at its core, with some of the best modeling, drafting, and documentation capabilities of any BIM on the market.

Advanced 3D modeling is where Vectorworks Architect stands out from the crowd, giving architects and design purists tools to stretch their imagination.

While it might not be possible to find some of the all-in-one construction and project management software capabilities one might find elsewhere, Vectorworks does offer other products that can work seamlessly with Architect. This includes software for construction site mapping, industrial lighting, and entertainment venues.

For architects and designers looking for a BIM that will help bring projects and concepts to life, Vectorworks Architect is a sound choice.

4. Tekla Structures BIM Software

Civil engineering and structural engineering is the best space where Tekla Structures shines. Tekla Structures was created by software giant Trimble and based on a steel structural modeling software called XSteel.

Trimble has kept steel and architectural design at the core of Structures while incorporating glass, wood, concrete, and other building materials.

Tekla Structures is well adapted for large-scale industrial projects that need BIM to help manage construction materials and resources. It’s been used to design projects from bridges and airports to sports stadiums and mega-malls.

Steel and concrete fabricators, contractors, and structural engineers will render and manage projects efficiently with Tekla Structures.

5. Graphisoft ARCHICAD

If there were a BIM software equivalent to a Swiss Army knife, it might be ARCHICAD. It’s used widely by architects, designers, engineers, and urban planners for a comprehensive project’s design.

ARCHICAD’s user interface is functional and straightforward, making it one of the more accessible BIM software to pick up for beginners. ARCHICAD is also one of the longest-standing BIM software products on the market since its release 30 years ago.

ARCHICAD can render 3D models of anything from an office park landscaping project to entire college campuses. But one of the significant benefits of ARCHICAD is that it’s an open BIM, meaning that it can write and read BIM data in a vendor-neutral format (ifc). That allows seamless data exchange with other project partners, no matter what other design tools they use.

ARCHICAD offers compelling and sophisticated tools and features for creating BIM Model. Its scripting engine allows intelligent and flexible objects that are more than just data containers.

ARCHICAD is an excellent option for a versatile BIM solution that offers effective content creation and visualization features.

6. Microstatio

MicroStation’s advanced parametric 3D modeling and intelligent drafting capabilities enable infrastructure professionals of any discipline to collaborate on and deliver projects of any scale and complexity.

You and your team can aggregate work in MicroStation, including designs and models created with Bentley’s discipline-specific modeling applications. As a result, you can create comprehensive, multi-discipline BIM models, documentation, and other deliverables.

MicroStation and all Bentley BIM applications are built on the same comprehensive modeling platform. You, therefore, can quickly progress your MicroStation work into discipline-specific workflows with Bentley’s design and analytical modeling applications. With this flexibility, each member of your project team has precisely the correct application for the work they need to do.

7. ALLPLAN 2021 BIM Software

Allplan offers 3D BIM design and detailing software for precaster, rebar detailers​, civil and structural engineers.

Allplan is the interdisciplinary platform for architects, engineers, and contractors that accompanies and integrates the design and construction process throughout all project phases.

  • Smooth interdisciplinary data exchange
  • Freely switch between 2D and 3D working methods
  • Unsurpassed information quality and precision

Allplan enables you to build virtually first, then, in reality, indicating any errors and conflicts early even during the design phase, avoiding construction delays.

8. Autodesk Civil 3d

Autodesk® Civil 3D® software is a civil engineering design and documentation solution that supports Building Information Modeling (BIM) workflows on civil infrastructure projects, including roads and highways, rail, site development, airports, and water.

Civil 3D helps civil infrastructure professionals improve project delivery, reduce risk, errors, and omissions, and respond faster to project changes. Additionally, users can streamline time-consuming tasks such as corridor design (road and rail), intersection design, parcel layout, site grading, and piping design with specific tools and customizable design standards.

9. ArchiCAD

ARCHICAD is an architectural BIM CAD software for Macintosh and Windows developed by the Hungarian company Graphisoft.

In a nutshell, Archicad is an authoring design software primarily used by architects and BIM managers. It has a reputation for being user-friendly, allowing architects to focus on their end goal of designing.

Design and deliver projects of any size with Archicad’s robust suite of built-in tools and user-friendly interface that make it the most efficient and intuitive BIM software on the market.

Featuring out-of-the-box design documentation, one-click publishing, photo-realistic rendering, and best-in-class analysis. Archicad lets you focus on what you do best: significant design buildings.

10. Procore BIM Software

Procore connects all your people, software, and data on one platform—so everyone on your project has access to everything they need. The platform gives you the freedom to connect with hundreds of integrations in the Procore App Marketplace. So even if we don’t build it, you can join it.

Equip the entire job site with instant access to reliable BIM data on any device.

  • Exceptional performance
  • Mitigate risk
  • Build the project owners are expecting

11. Autodesk Navisworks

Autodesk Navisworks Manage software (commonly called Navis) offers design and construction professionals a comprehensive project review solution, providing advanced tools for interference analysis, 5D analysis, and spatial coordination.

Autodesk Navisworks Manage software is a comprehensive project review solution that supports coordination, analysis, and communication of design intent and constructability.

The BIM software can combine multidisciplinary design data created in a broad range of Building Information Modeling (BIM), digital prototype, and process plant design applications into a single integrated project model. Interference management tools help design and construction professionals anticipate and minimize potential problems before construction begins, helping to reduce expensive delays and rework.

Navisworks Manage (also known as Navis) is integrated with Autodesk BIM 360 Glue software to help connect the entire project team and streamline BIM project review and coordination workflows.

The software combines model coordination with project quantities and schedules to deliver simulation and quantification features, including time and cost analysis. Entire project models can be published and viewed using Autodesk Navisworks Freedom software. Navisworks supports to;

  • Combine design and construction data into a single model.
  • Identify and resolve clash and interference problems before construction.
  • Aggregate data from multiple trades to better control outcomes.

12. BIMx

BIMx is a set of desktop and mobile software tools to interactively present the 3D model and 2D documentation of Building Information Models created with ArchiCAD through a more straightforward and intuitive interface than ArchiCAD’s complex BIM authoring environment’s UI.

GRAPHISOFT’s mobile BIM communication tool, BIMx, allows you to explore architectural designs interactively through the BIM model on iOS and Android mobile devices. It features the ‘BIMx Hyper-model,’ a unique technology for navigating the integrated 2D drawing sheets and 3D Building Information Models.

13. BricsCAD® BIM Software

BricsCAD is a software application for computer-aided design, developed by Bricsys nv. The company was founded in 2002 by Erik de Keyser, a longtime CAD entrepreneur.

With BricsCAD BIM Software create clear and accurate construction documentation in record time, using the automatic generation of sections, elevations, drawing views, and sheet layouts.

14. Edificius BIM Software

Edificius is the professional choice for architects, engineers, and surveyors looking for a BIM software that will help bring projects and concepts to life: create floor plans or 3D models with parametric BIM objects and complete the project with objects from the software’s online library.

15. Infurnia

Infurnia is a cloud-native BIM Software for professional architects that enables you to implement BIM in your designs in a seamless and integrated manner.

Quickly access detailed model information through visual programming. Access model information in any 3rd party software using Infurnia APIs. Export your model and model information in industry-standard IFC4 format

Conclusion

Merely a few decades after early prototypes, BIM technologies are now one of the most significant aides in a building’s design journey. As innovations propagate, developers keep adding new features to the BIM software currently available on the market.

Therefore, the suitable design solution for each project is unique and depends on its scope. Though, the rising competition among the companies that develop the top BIM software is poised to make the lives of designers easier.

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